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BrainInBrain SIGNED

Neural circuits underlying complex brain function across animals - from conserved core concepts to specializations defining a species’ identity

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "BrainInBrain" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: Paradisgatan 5c
city: LUND
postcode: 22100
website: n.a.

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Sweden [SE]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙500˙000 €
 EC max contribution 1˙500˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2016-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2017
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2017-01-01   to  2021-12-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    LUNDS UNIVERSITET SE (LUND) coordinator 1˙500˙000.00


 Project objective

The core function of all brains is to compute the current state of the world, compare it to the desired state of the world and select motor programs that drive behavior minimizing any mismatch. The circuits underlying these functions are the key to understand brains in general, but so far they are completely unknown. Three problems have hindered progress: 1) The animal’s desired state of the world is rarely known. 2) Most studies in simple models have focused on sensory driven, reflex-like processes, and not considered self-initiated behavior. 3) The circuits underlying complex behaviors in vertebrates are widely distributed, containing millions of neurons. With this proposal I aim at overcoming these problems using insects, whose tiny brains solve the same basic problems as our brains but with 100,000 times fewer cells. Moreover, the central complex, a single conserved brain region consisting of only a few thousand neurons, is crucial for sensory integration, motor control and state-dependent modulation, essentially being a ‘brain in the brain’. To simplify the problem further I will focus on navigation behavior. Here, the desired and actual states of the world are equal to the desired and current headings of the animal, with mismatches resulting in compensatory steering. I have previously shown how the central complex encodes the animal’s current heading. Now I will use behavioral training to generate animals with highly defined desired headings, and correlate neural activity with the animal’s ‘intentions’ and actions - at the level of identified neurons. To establish the involved conserved core circuitry valid across insects I will compare species with distinct lifestyles. Secondly, I will reveal how these circuits have evolved to account for each species’ unique ecology. The proposed work will provide a coherent framework to study key concepts of fundamental brain functions in unprecedented detail - using a single, conserved, but flexible neural circuit.


List of deliverables.
Data Management Plan Open Research Data Pilot 2019-05-31 18:14:38

Take a look to the deliverables list in detail:  detailed list of BrainInBrain deliverables.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2020 Andrea Adden, Sara Wibrand, Keram Pfeiffer, Eric Warrant, Stanley Heinze
The brain of a nocturnal migratory insect, the Australian Bogong moth
published pages: , ISSN: 0021-9967, DOI: 10.1002/cne.24866
Journal of Comparative Neurology 2020-02-19
2017 Thomas Stone, Barbara Webb, Andrea Adden, Nicolai Ben Weddig, Anna Honkanen, Rachel Templin, William Wcislo, Luca Scimeca, Eric Warrant, Stanley Heinze
An Anatomically Constrained Model for Path Integration in the Bee Brain
published pages: 3069-3085.e11, ISSN: 0960-9822, DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2017.08.052
Current Biology 27/20 2019-06-13
2017 Stanley Heinze
Unraveling the neural basis of insect navigation
published pages: 58-67, ISSN: 2214-5745, DOI: 10.1016/j.cois.2017.09.001
Current Opinion in Insect Science 24 2019-06-13
2018 Stanley Heinze, Ajay Narendra, Allen Cheung
Principles of Insect Path Integration
published pages: R1043-R1058, ISSN: 0960-9822, DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.04.058
Current Biology 28/17 2019-04-02

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The information about "BRAININBRAIN" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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